As the Founder of one of Nigeria’s leading lifestyle blogs, Tosin is a great example of how women can turn their passion into thriving businesses. In addition to being a blogger, she is also a social media strategist; providing strategy for some well-known corporate and individual brands. She shares her plans for the future, and why it’s important to keep innovating and staying ahead of competition. Be inspired.
You are one of the most respected and well-known bloggers in Africa, how did you start blogging?
It was purely passion. It started as a hobby before it grew into something a lot more serious. I really love to write. I started the blog with my personal contents and articles. I just thought to have my articles kept online and not to share them. It was more like my story book; whenever I write about anything, I just have them saved online. Well, as at then, social media was not what it is now.
Yeah right! Funny enough, people do say I can pass for a musician because they feel I have the voice. I auditioned for MTN Project Fame in 2010 but was not selected. Blogging for me is a passion.
Have you always been an entrepreneur, if not, what were you doing before you started your business?
No, I was working elsewhere as at the time I started my blog.
A lot of people believe that blogging is “easy” and just anyone with a computer and access to internet can do it successfully; do you agree with that?
That’s a really funny statement, perhaps made by people who don’t understand the rudiments of digital media. Check out a roll-call of 100 blogs and see how many are still running up till date. If blogging was that easy, perhaps, all those blogs would be constantly updated. The truth is that, blogging takes a lot of time, consistency and follow through.
What was your experience when you started, and what are some of the challenges you faced in running your business?
Firstly, the issue of internet services cannot be over emphasized. The networks sometimes can be very frustrating; you can have three different internet providers turned on with no signal at all. Secondly, you can run out of ideas for creating contents within the twinkle of an eye, and by that I mean creating fresh content and recreating old content. Also, merging trend follow-ups with the website schedules can be killing considering that you have to be on top of the game. Another thing is staffing. Many times people will say they would like to work and leave in few months/years after learning a few things. We are managing the hands we have and looking forward to employing more as the brand grows bigger than what it is presently.
Congratulations! In February this year, you celebrated the 6th anniversary of the OSG blog; where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?
Thank you! They do say time flies when you are having fun yes? Lol! In the next ten years, we will be bigger than what we are now definitely. One of our goals is to be one of the top Nigerian websites and we are working towards achieving that.
How do you stay innovative, and ahead of competition; what are some of the things you do to grow your blog and the OSG brand?
I keep reminding myself not to lose focus as it takes a lot of courage and consistency to build a formidable blog lest you get knocked out. To grow the website, we try to create the right content, drive traffic to the website, pushing the brand out there isn’t easy as it looks. Since we give to receive, when we post content out there, we expect comments and reactions. Honestly, it has been tough and with the competition in the industry, we just have to keep pushing and staying ahead.
Let’s talk about the New Media Conference – in its second year running – what’s the idea behind the conference, and what do you hope to achieve with it?
The idea behind New Media Conference is to chart growth in marketing and advertising standards in the Nigerian digital media space. We hope to articulate interests and input from stakeholders in the online/digital media space and seek to turn the results of that conversation to real-life, on-time usage.
Excellent! Besides blogging, you are a social media strategist; what exactly does that portfolio entail, and what are some of the brands you’ve worked with?
Social Media Strategy essentially entails creating online awareness for brands, events, products and services. We’ve worked with a lot of brands, but these are some off the top of my head: Samsung, OLX, DealDey, Trace, Multichoice, Pepsi, MTN, and a lot of others.
You seem to interact with a lot of celebrities; how do you mix with them and still stay grounded and focused on growing your business?
That’s a great question. As a cardinal rule, I do not mix business with pleasure. It’s hard to do that, and still achieve your set targets and goals in business. However it’s also clear that my interaction with celebrities has helped my business tremendously. So, ome way or the other I have had to leverage on the relationships, I have with them.
For two years consecutively, you have been listed on the LLA/YNaija 100 Most Inspiring Women List; what does that recognition mean to you?
That recognition means a whole lot to me. It’s important to me to be recognized for the work that I do, especially to be on the list of other incredible women who have achieved amazing things. It really makes me feel elated growing as a woman and then being listed as one of the 100 Most Inspiring Women.
Who are some of your role models, and what have you learned from them?
Well, in this business, I don’t have a role model because I feel a lot of people are still doing what they feel is working for them. But I admire Uche Pedro of BellaNaija.
You seem to do a lot of travelling; name three of your favourite tourist destinations?
Cape Town, South Africa
Words of advice for upcoming female entrepreneurs?
For all female entrepreneurs in any field or line of business/industry, the key thing is to understand and appreciate your field. That someone else is getting it right doesn’t mean you can’t get it better. From understanding, you can be able to tailor your own niche and discover your potential and business strengths. In summary, be yourself, surround yourself with good people, get viable mentors, find the balance between your work life and personal life, I had my own fair share of difficulty but I am proud to say I found a way to balance it.
Follow Tosin on Instagram @lifeofalagosgirl
Follow Olorisupagal blog on social media: @olorisupergal
The Leading Ladies Africa Series is a weekly interview series that focuses on women of African descent, showcases their experiences across all socio-economic sectors, highlights their personal and professional achievements and offers useful advice on how to make life more satisfying for women.
It is an off-shoot of Leading Ladies Africa, a non-profit that promotes women empowerment and gender inclusion for women of African descent. Do you know any woman of African descent doing phenomenal things? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we just might feature her.